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Samsung and Apple today shape up for their biggest patent fight yet in a San Jose court, where Apple has charged Samsung with illegally copying technical features, including touchscreen gestures and designs of the iPhone for its Galaxy S flagship line of smartphones.The fight is set to be one of the most brutal ever seen by the technology industry.Samsung has fired back, claiming Apple has been illegally using Samsung-patented technology in the iPhone.

Apple is seeking US$2.5 billion in damages: “Samsung has reaped billions of dollars in profits and caused Apple to lose hundreds of millions of dollars through its violation of Apple’s intellectual property,” its lawyers claimed in court filings.

Samsung’s lawyers called Apple’s damages request “absurd”. “Apple seeks to exclude Samsung from the market, based on its complaints that Samsung has used the very same public-domain design concepts that Apple borrowed from other competitors,” they said.

“Apple, which sold its first iPhone nearly 20 years after Samsung started developing mobile phone technology, could not have sold a single iPhone without the benefit of Samsung’s patented technology.”

The case is being closely watched by many sections of the ICT industries. “Obviously, Apple is going for injunctions on this,” said Michael Barclay, a fellow with the Electronic Frontier Foundation. “There are a lot of things in the iPhone that were carefully thought out and easy to use.”

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